CENTENNIAL ERA BALLOON FEST OFFERS THREE DAYS OF FAMILY FUN
INDIANAPOLIS, Tuesday, March 31, 2009 -- Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials have released the complete schedule for the Centennial Era Balloon Festival presented by AT&T Real Yellow Pages, and two hot air balloon "glows" and two balloon races over three days will provide fans with plenty of family-friendly entertainment.
A balloon "glow" will start the Centennial Era Balloon Festival presented by AT&T Real Yellow Pages at 8 p.m. Friday, May 1. The Speedway's Gate 2 -- the main gate/tunnel on 16th Street -- will open to the public at 7 p.m.
The hare-and-hound format "Founders Race" starts at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 2 --- just as the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon gets underway in downtown Indianapolis and 35,000 runners make their way toward the Speedway.
The IMS infield, 16th and 10th Streets, and Main Street will be closed to the public Saturday morning due to the Mini-Marathon, but viewing of the launch will be possible from numerous points outside the facility.
Saturday evening at IMS will be full of entertainment for all ages, with Gate 2 opening at 6 p.m. Activities include collectible AT&T Real Yellow Pages balloon pin giveaways, balloon creations from "Matt the Balloon Guy" for kids and wine tasting courtesy of Oliver Winery.
Live music, featuring Josh Kelley and Ryan Cabrera and their "Tell It Like It Is" tour, begins at 6:30 p.m. on the Coke Zero Stage in the Pagoda Plaza. The Kin and Brandon Whyde also will perform. The Centennial Era Balloon Festival presented by AT&T Real Yellow Pages balloon "glow" begins at 8 p.m., with fireworks bringing the evening to a conclusion at 9 p.m.
The final hare-and-hound race of the balloon festival, the "100 Years Race," gets underway at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday, May 3. Gate 2 opens to the public at 7 a.m. for the launch. The IMS Hall of Fame Museum will open at 9 a.m.
Parking and admission to all Centennial Era Balloon Festival presented by AT&T Real Yellow Pages events is free. The general public should enter IMS via Gate 2 for all open Centennial Era Balloon Festival presented by AT&T Real Yellow Pages activities.
For more information, visit www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com.
Indianapolis Motor Speedway Centennial Era Balloon Festival Presented by AT&T Real Yellow Pages (Subject to change)
Friday, May 1
Public gates open (Gate 2)
Saturday, May 2
(No morning access to IMS infield due to OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon)
"Founders Race" begins
Public balloon event parking opens (Gate 2)
AT&T Real Yellow Pages collectible balloon pin distribution
Oliver Winery wine tasting
"Matt the Balloon Guy" entertainment
Josh Kelley and Ryan Cabrera on the Coke Zero Stage (opening acts: The Kin and Brandon Whyde)
Sunday, May 3
Public gates open
"100 Years Race" begins
IMS Hall of Fame Museum opens
2009 IMS tickets: Established in 1909, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has long prevailed as an icon of motorsports excellence. Beginning in 2009, the Speedway celebrates its Centennial Era, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the facility in 2009 and the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race in 2011.
Tickets for the three events in 2009 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway -- the Indianapolis 500, Allstate 400 at the Brickyard and Red Bull Indianapolis GP -- can be purchased online at www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com at any time.
Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are on sale. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at (866) 221-8775 for more information.